Gary Nunn


Gary Nunn is a freelance journalist

Session: The Future of Freelancing

Gary Nunn:is an award-winning journalist. He specialises in writing human interest features, but also writes news, interviews, long form features and op eds for newspapers and magazines in Australia, the UK and the US. He mainly writes for the BBC, the Guardian, the ABC, the Sydney Morning Herald, News Corp and the Australian Women's Weekly. In a regular Guardian column called 'Mind your language,' Gary made linguistics accessible by using news hooks, humour and anecdotes. Gary is a Walkleys Our Watch Fellow - in 2019, he completed a scholarship devised for "13 outstanding journalists to promote better media coverage of violence against women in Australia." Prior to becoming a journalist, Gary was Director of Communications for, the online petition platform that empowers everyday people to make the change they want to see. At the beginning of his career, Gary spent over a decade in the not-for-profit sector in the UK and Australia, working as a communications professional for charities including Barnardo's, Camp Quality, Comic Relief and Stonewall.


Panel Discussion:

  • What is the future of freelancing
  • Repurposing content
  • Getting our opinion into print
  • How to avoid writer's block

Session: The Freelance Collective

NINA HENDY is a freelance business journalist & wordsmith, writing both on the editorial and content sides of the fence. After cutting her teeth in regional newspapers, Nina worked in a business magazine. She began freelancing 15 years ago, heading out on her own eight years ago during the GFC. She was asked to write a weekly column with SMH media & marketing pages the following week, and hasn’t looked back.

Nina is also the founder of The Freelance Collective – an curated community of top Australian creative freelancers in 23 categories. She and a small group of Australian freelancers launched the platform to empower creative talent to be easier for clients to find online and build relationships with their clients. The Freelance Collective is also a supportive community for talent listed.

Topics Covered:

  • The origins of the Freelance Collective
  • Moving from permanent employment to freelancing
  • Freelancing remotely
  • Freelancing top tips
  • Maximising your earning potential
  • Builiding a business out of the freelance lifestyle

Nina Hendy

The Freelance Collective

Journalist & Entrepreneur

Nina is a freelance journalist whose work appears in many publications and is the founder of The Freelance Collective

fran molloy

Fran Molloy

Freelance Journalist

Fran is a journalist and part-time university lecturer. Fran is also the founder and director of Freelance (The Australian freelance journalists network)

Panel Session: The Future of Freelancing

FRAN MOLLOY is a journalist, part-time university lecturer and freelance editor and copywriter. She has been published in the Sydney Morning Herald, The Age, the ABC online and lots of good outlets in Australia and internationally. Fran writes feature articles and profiles across a very wide range of topics, including technology, health, environment, science, education, business, photography, law, food and ‘lifestyle.’ Fran is the founder and moderator of Freeline (the Australian freelance journalists network) and is a long-term Media Alliance member.

Topics Covered:

  • The future of freelancing
  • The Media and Arts Alliance
  • Building an audience

Session: The Future of Film

NICK TANTARO: Since making his first comedy film on his dad’s 8mm camera, Nick has been immersed in the major technological evolution of film, particularly from analogue to digital platforms and has witnessed firsthand its impact on this industry. He’s worked as an advisor, judge, film festival director, lecturer and film tutor in all aspects of film and video production. Although he has been involved with commercial productions, he is proud to count around 100 short film productions in the roles of writer, producer and director. A number of his short films have won several awards including an invitation to Cannes and an AFI nomination. He has a deep interest in film history and culture and can be heard regularly on ABC Northern Tasmania radio talking all things film. Nick’s freelance working career extends to many other areas including writing, communications, marketing, events and project management..

Topics Covered:

  • The future of film
  • Pitching to studios
  • Running a small business
nick tantaro

Nick Tantaro

Film maker

Nick has written and produced many idependent films.

Kirsty Mate

Dr Kirsty Máté

Kirsty Máté is an award-winning sustainability expert

Session: Sustainability

KIRSTY Máté is an educator, consultant, researcher, writer, designer and artist on all things related to sustainable design. With over 30 years of experience in this area, you could say she is a pioneer. After recently leaving a full time academic position at UTAS, she is currently starting her own business, reth!nk, realising how rethinking small to medium scale projects can lead to sustainable solutions. She has recently completed a PhD on the impact new forms of sustainable consumerism will have on the design of shopping 'scapes'. As part of this research, she created the Bye Buy! Shop project creating pop-up events in Launceston challenging concepts of consumerism. Her art work explores the transformation of waste materials through the traditional skill of knitting and with the engagement of the community. She has published extensively in this area, with her most recent publication a chapter in the book Unmaking Waste in Production and Consumption. Kirsty has been Program Directors for the Interior Design at UTAS, and Interior Architecture at UNSW, the Director of her own company EcoBalance Sustainable Design Consultancy, founder and organizer of the first Australian sustainable design 'expo' MADE Accountable in 1995, former Principal Research & Development Officer for the Centre for Design at RMIT, convenor for the Society for Responsible Design, and Councilor for the VIC/TAS Design Institute of Australia.

Topics Covered:

  • Sustainability
  • Creative tips for repurposing objects
  • How to support a sustainable lifestyle

Workshop: Comedy

RACHEL BERGER is one of Australia’s favourite stand-up comedians and a woman of remarkably diversified talents. In addition to playing the xylophone and carving avocado pips into small Buddhas she’s recently stopped feeling guilty. There are no cows too sacred for this Berger. “Experience her machine gun delivery and ricocheting thoughts and you realise she must be as pumped as any AFL footballer.”

Rachel has worked variously as a comedian, broadcaster, novelist, columnist, agitator and television entertainer. She’s taken four solo shows to the Edinburgh Fringe Festival and her dynamic presence and engagingly sharp observations have made her an extremely popular performer both live and on television, across Australia and overseas.

Rachel's high public profile has done much to establish the position of women in comedy providing a distinctive voice for women's opinions and viewpoints.


Session: Google News Initiative

JOHN BERGIN: John has trained and mentored journalists and led digital transition projects in some of Australia’s leading newsrooms. He has previously held senior editorial roles at Sky News and SBS News, consulted to News Corp Australia and lectured on journalism at the University of Western Australia.

Topics Covered:

  • Using Key Words
  • Deep Searches
  • Digital Reporting
  • Verification

Session: The Future of Film

OWEN TILBURY: Owen is the Festival Director and Board Chair of BOFA Ltd and responsible for overseeing all aspects of the administration, sponsorship, marketing and operations of this successful Film Festival, which now runs annually in Hobart and Launceston. BOFA won the award for Outstanding Event at the 2014 CGU Business Excellence Awards and the award for Building Communities at the 2015 Business Excellence Awards

Topics Covered:

  • The future of film
  • Successful pitches
  • Running a festival
Own Tilbury

Owen Tilbury

Owen is the director of the BOFA Film Festival

Keynote: The Future of Work.

DR MARCUS BOWLES: Marcus' primary interest is with transformational human and technology capabilities and how they create viable futures for individuals and the industries, regions, professions and organisations for whom they work. Dr Bowles has 25 years’ national and international consultancy, academic teaching, and applied research experience. His passion is working on wicked problems with people who are prepared to look around blind corners and design innovative, system-level workforce solutions.

Topics Covered:

  • What is the future of work?
  • Evaluating your skills
  • Multiple work streams

Session - Accounting demystified - Learn how to save time and improve your bottom line

OLIVER GARSIDE: Oliver joined Rounded as COO in early 2016 when the app was in it's initial beta phase. Amongst other responsibilities he heads up Rounded's Customer Success program and interacts with Rounded users daily.

Oliver has a deep understanding of the business challenges faced by freelancers.

Session Details

If you dread the accounting and financial admin side of running your freelance business then you're not alone. Often cited in surveys as one of the least loved aspects of being a sole trader, managing business finances can be seriously stressful. But it doesn't have to be that way. In this session Holly Shoebridge and Oliver Garside will demystify accounting and show how implementing a simple structure and having the right tools can change how you feel about accounting and financial admin. During the session you'll learn:

Topics Covered

  • How to avoid the most common freelance accounting mistakes
  • Tips to reduce the time your accounting and business admin takes
  • Expense management tricks to improve your bottom line
  • Tax time tips to reduce stress and get in your accountants good books
  • Why the right accounting software will change your life


Session - Accounting demystified - Learn how to save time and improve your bottom line"

HOLLY SHOEBRIDGE: Holly, the director of Oceans Accounting & Advisory, is a certified public practitioner of CPA Australia, an ASIC agent, a registered BAS agent, tax agent in training, Xero partner & Quickbooks advisor. Holly has over 15 years experience providing accounting, bookkeeping and tax services to large corporate and not for profit clients, both domestic and international, within the music industry, and more recently advising SMEs across a wide variety of industries including creative and media, recruitment, medical, agricultural, finance and construction.

However, Holly is not your typical accountant.

She also holds a Diploma of Counselling; she's a Lifeline Telephone Crisis Supporter, a volunteer primary school ethics teacher and a quirky creative, previously with an associated photography and photographic art business. Holly had reached a point where she had considered throwing in the towel on her accounting studies and career. But then thought, why not combine her interests and professional experience to help others? This is how Oceans Accounting & Advisory came to be.

What's new at the Walkleys & opportunities for freelancers

LOUISA GRAHAM: Louisa has worked with the Walkley Foundation since 2007 and was appointed Chief Executive in February 2018 after holding the position of General Manager since 2011. Her priority has been to drive funding and partnerships to deliver a network that positions the Foundation at the heart of the Australian media.

She works closely with the board and staff to implement the strategic business plan and manages the day-to-day operations of the Foundation, as well as being the Company Secretary. Louisa has a background in both not-for-profit management and the media, having worked for United Nations Women, The Australian Institute of International Affairs, the Sydney Writers' Festival and the Ten Network.

Louisa has also managed national community awareness campaigns for both White Ribbon Day and the Australian Republican Movement. She is a graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors, has a BA in Communications from UTS and has held a number of non-executive board positions.

Topics Covered:

Hear from the Walkleys Chief Executive Louisa Graham on the how the Walkley Foundation recognises outstanding freelance journalism and the opportunities available for the future

Workshop: Supercharging Your Freelancer Life!

ESTHER COLEMAN HAWKINS:  I’m a smart, creative and innovative producer with a wealth of worldwide programming experience. From the award-winning Revolution School for ABC1 to the Logie-nominated Last Chance Saloon, my goal is to bring intimate stories to life with insight and humour.

I’m also a long-standing, and enthusiastic, veteran of development. I thrive with the challenge of turning an exciting idea into a successful TV series. Some of my favourite success stories are Luke Warm Sex, Secrets of Our Suburbs and House of Food Obsessives.

Alongside two decades of program making, I love coaching and mentoring people both inside and beyond the media industry. I’ve helped people kick start their projects and revamp, restart or change careers. I’m driven by the fact that I love working and I think, given how much of our lives most us of spend at work, that we need to do something that meets our needs.

Session Details

In this session Esther and Denise from Media Mentors will build on the rest of the festival’s content to help you launch, relaunch or revive your freelance career. They will conduct a skills audit, teach you how to find new markets and pitch to them, find inspiration and the courage to get started and finally they will help you write goals that will transform your working life.

Workshop: Supercharging Your Freelancer Life!

DENISE ERIKSEN: I bloody love “television” – creative content made for all platforms – and my career has allowed me to play in that particular sandpit for more years than I can remember! I binge watch everything from high-end (and low rent) drama and documentary to factual and reality shows.

I’ve worked as a journalist, producer and Executive Producer around the world - and in brilliant jobs as Head of Factual and Head of Current Affairs at the ABC and Head of Production and Development at SBS. I regularly consult for international companies setting up in Australia – and I’m currently Development Executive in Australia for Arrow Media UK.

In tandem with my production and commissioning career, I’ve made it my mission to ensure that talented people access the training and resources they need to forge their careers. I’ve run courses for the BBC, ITV, ABC, SBS, NITV, TVNZ and RTE. Most recently, I trained journalists and producers in Ho Chi Minh – and worked as co- Director of Make It in Melbourne for AFTRS and Film Vic.

My career highlights? Discovering and nurturing amazing talent, commissioning shows like Choir of Hard Knocks, Executive Producing shows like The Games with John Clarke – and making Eurovision Australian for SBS.

Panellist: The Future of Freelancing

DANIELLE CRONIN: Danielle Cronin is the first female editor of metropolitan masthead the Brisbane Times. The award-winning journalist has worked in Brisbane, Bundaberg, Africa, and Canberra where she covered 10 federal budgets and three federal elections.

As a reporter for The Canberra Times, she spent seven years in the federal press gallery reporting on stories ranging from the coup that ended Kevin Rudd’s prime ministership to the Canberra firestorm, which was recognised with a Walkley Award.

She has also worked in South Africa as the inaugural winner of the Independent Newspapers Fellowship for Australia and travelled to Germany as the winner of the German Prize for Journalism.

After a long career in newspapers, Cronin joined the digital revolution and is keenly interested in pushing the boundaries of storytelling and innovative ways to build online communities including through the use of social media.

Workshop: Simple and powerful video production with Premiere Rush

DR TIM KITCHEN: With about thirty years of teaching and education leadership experience, Dr Tim Kitchen is Adobe’s Senior Education Specialist for Asia Pacific. Tim regularly liaises with schools & universities focusing on enhancing creativity in education. He also manages the Adobe Education leadership and active use programs throughout Australasia and helps lead the Adobe Education Exchange ( which now has over 780,000 members.

A passionate advocate for creativity in education, and a well-recognised education thought leader in Australia, Tim is a regular presenter for a wide range of national and international education events.

Session Details

Video is now considered a literacy and with many people relying on video to communicate, it has become an essential skill. Adobe is the world leader in video literacy solutions. Without any prior video production knowledge Premiere Rush is an easy production powerhouse to increase your video presence.

Session: Digital Security

Simon Harman:  Simon is the co-founder and CEO of the Loki project and has successfully driven the strategic direction of the project since it’s inception in 2017. Simon brings a broad range of technical and project management expertise to the table from both the events and blockchain industries, where he provided education and facilitated discussion on the blockchain industry on a weekly basis at Australia’s largest cryptocurrency meetup at the Blockchain Centre.

He is an advocate for security and privacy in the digital age, committed to developing technologies to enhance the general public’s access to leading secure designs, keeping their information and democratic freedoms in tact. He also serves part-time in the Australian Army as an Officer Cadet (MUR).

Topics Covered

Staying safe online and digital security across all of your devices

Keynote: Understanding your superannuation

ERIC BLACK: Eric’s primary focus as Business Development Manager is to help promote the best interests of Media Super members in Victoria and Tasmania. A significant part of Eric’s role is to engage with members, employers and stakeholders, such as unions and industry associations, to educate and support, with the ultimate aim of helping members on their journey towards a comfortable retirement. Eric brings close to two decades of relationship management, sales, and management roles within the financial services sector in the United States, Ireland, and Australia. What Eric likes best about his current role, is the interaction with members across such a diverse range of creative industries

Topics Covered

  • Eric Black will discuss how to make sense of your super,
  • what freelancers need to consider for their futures,
  • how current circumstances have affected super funds,
  • and what the future may hold for superannuation

Session: The Future of Work Panel

Dr Penny O'Donnell is a media sociologist and senior lecturer in international media and journalism at the University of Sydney. Her research investigates journalism’s current ‘ec-tech’ vulnerabilities.

Since 2013, she has worked on the “New Beats Project”, an ARC-funded university-industry collaboration that engages with key stakeholders to analyse and respond to job loss, workforce contraction, and growing precarity in journalism work and freelancing.

Forthcoming publications that exemplify this new area of research include Journalists and Job Loss (scheduled for publication by Routledge in March 2021), and Upheaval: Lives in journalism before and during digital disruption (scheduled for publication by NewSouth Press in March 2021).




In Conversaton: Cath Webber with Louisa Graham

Cath Webber is the Co-Chair of Women In Media Australia.

She has worked in the media for more than 20 years, appears weekly on Channel 7’s Sunrise as a commentator and is a founding member of the Queensland WIM committee.

Webber is a Strategic Communications Adviser and prior to that was Editor of the Gold Coast Bulletin – its first female editor in 130 years and the same paper where she started as a cadet in 1995.

Cath will moderate the discussion with Louisa.

Session Details

Cath will moderate the discussion with Walkleys Chief Executive Louisa Graham on the how the Walkley Foundation recognises outstanding freelance journalism and the opportunities available for the future